INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2004
SECTION 13(9), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
- AND -
(REPRESENTED BY COMMUNICATIONS WORKERS' UNION)
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Mr Murphy
Worker Member: Ms Ni Mhurchu
1. Appeal of Rights Commissioners Recommendation IR21428/04/MR.
2. The worker concerned has been employed by An Post since January 1980. Since 1994 he has been working in the Dublin Mail Centre. Following a series of incidents of insubordination and disruptive behaviour the worker was suspended from duty on full pay for a period of five weeks. He had previously received several warnings, both verbal and written, in relation to his behaviour at work. The worker appealed the outcome of the disciplinary process but was subsequently advised by the HR Manager that the disciplinary penalty should stand.
The issue was referred to a Rights Commissioner for investigation and recommendation. In his Recommendation which issued on the 14th July, 2005 he recommended that the offence recorded against the worker should stand. He also recommended that the Company and the Union should put in place a series of measures designed to ensure that the worker does not continue to have difficulties in his work.
The Union, on behalf of the worker, appealed the Recommendation to the Labour Court on the 10th August, 2005, in accordance with Section 13(9) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 18th October, 2005.
3. 1. The worker feels that he was unfairly suspended from duty for a five week period.
2. The Company has failed to give the worker the required training on the machinery he is required to use.
4. 1.The decision to record a disciplinary penalty against the worker was warranted and was only reached after due consideration and fair application of the agreed disciplinary procedures.
2.The Company is prepared to agree a programme with the worker and his Union over the next twelve months designed to ensure that the worker does not continue to have difficulties in work
It is clear to the Court that the facts of this case are symptomatic of an underlying difficulty affecting the working relationship between the Claimant, his colleagues and Management. In the Court's view the parties should concentrate on addressing this core difficulty.
The Court is convinced that the Rights Commissioner's recommendations provide a fair and practical framework within which the underlying cause of the current difficulties can be addressed and dealt with. The Court feels that it is in the interests of both parties that these recommendations be adopted and implemented.
In these circumstances the Court affirms the Recommendation of the Rights Commissioner and the appeal is disallowed.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
28th October, 2005______________________
Enquiries concerning this Decision should be addressed to Madelon Geoghegan, Court Secretary.